Author Topic: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?  (Read 482 times)  

Offline L.E.Glazebrook

  • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
  • **
  • Posts: 67
  • Gender: Female
  • I love NYC
    • View Profile
Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
« on: January 09, 2020, 04:15:13 am »
Wondering whether any authors here have much experience/luck in attending for promotion purposes events like Comic-Con. Next one is in July in San Diego.
I have read someone here had, but can't remember who it was or on which topic.

Wondering how people go about it, was it worth it, and whether it led to added sales...

L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

KBoards.com

  • Advertisement
  • ***

    Offline Carol Davis

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 931
    • Gender: Female
    • New York
      • View Profile
      • Carol Davis Author
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #1 on: January 09, 2020, 06:50:38 am »
    Just attending the convention, rather than having a vendor table (which start at $3600)? What would you do on-site to promote your book?

    SDCC is an *enormous* event, and you'd be dealing with a lot of other vendors and attendees. You might want to look up much smaller SF and comic cons close to home, where the vendor price would be a lot less, and see how you do there. There are loads of them around the country every year.

    If you've just got one book (as it appears from your signature), I honestly wouldn't recommend spending much money on promotion. Hold off until you've got 3-4 books. Give readers something to move on to if they enjoy the first one. Otherwise, they'll forget about you in favor of other authors.







    Online Blerg et al.

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 501
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #2 on: January 09, 2020, 07:05:17 am »
    Wondering whether any authors here have much experience/luck in attending for promotion purposes events like Comic-Con. Next one is in July in San Diego.
    I have read someone here had, but can't remember who it was or on which topic.

    Wondering how people go about it, was it worth it, and whether it led to added sales...

    I've had luck at fairs, festivals, and farmers markets. But not at Cons, due to higher price point and because some cons aren't book-centric so I stoppd going as a vendor and started going as a panelist/volunteer or sometimes just an attendee. Writing can be isolating so going to a con is great networking and helps you to feel like you're a part of a community. Some people want that kind of thing, others don't.

    The other reason I stopped going as a vendor is because not many of the other writers were going as vendors. You can be standing next to the best writer you've ever met and you won't know it until they get up on stage and you find out they're the guest of honor. So when people like that are browsing the vendor area, it's humbling to say the least, and hard to maintain the air of experience and professionalism that you need in order to run a booth. That's not to say that you could or should not do it, but that's why it was tough for me.

    Oh and because I didn't want to be crammed into a vendor hall next to the toy vendors, I wanted to be in the con suite doing a local beer tasting or playtesting new board games with all the big name authors, who are, in fact, huge dorks.
    Wyrmwind #2: 15%

    Atlas #3: 10%

    Gulf Coast Poetry: 90%
    I edit books! Here's my: | kboards editor thread | website

    Offline notjohn

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2208
      • View Profile
      • Notjohn's Self-Publishing Guide
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #3 on: January 09, 2020, 08:10:49 am »
    Some people have a great knack at this sort of thing. Personally, I have learned to avoid such events, including book signings at physical bookstores. (Well, if one BEGGED me, I might relent.) In my experience, I can't even earn minimum wage ($7.50 in my state) at that sort of thing, and I bring Susan along to shmooze people for no salary at all.
    Notjohn's Guide to E-Book & Print Formatting: http://viewbook.at/notjohn

    The blog: http://notjohnkdp.blogspot.com

    Offline starkllr

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 670
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #4 on: January 09, 2020, 09:42:52 am »
    Just attending the convention, rather than having a vendor table (which start at $3600)? What would you do on-site to promote your book?


    It'd be a much better bet to get a table in Artists Alley ($350).  I've considered doing that at my local event (Awesome Con in Washington DC), but what I see as the big problem is that I'm not much of an extrovert, and the idea of having to be "on" for 3 days straight and talk enthusiastically to strangers, 10 hours each day, gives me hives.

     
    What if you could see everyone else's dreams?
    J.J. DiBenedetto | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Smashwords | Goodreads

    Offline L.E.Glazebrook

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 67
    • Gender: Female
    • I love NYC
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #5 on: January 09, 2020, 02:23:30 pm »
    Just attending the convention, rather than having a vendor table (which start at $3600)? What would you do on-site to promote your book?

    SDCC is an *enormous* event, and you'd be dealing with a lot of other vendors and attendees. You might want to look up much smaller SF and comic cons close to home, where the vendor price would be a lot less, and see how you do there. There are loads of them around the country every year.

    If you've just got one book (as it appears from your signature), I honestly wouldn't recommend spending much money on promotion. Hold off until you've got 3-4 books. Give readers something to move on to if they enjoy the first one. Otherwise, they'll forget about you in favor of other authors.

    Yes, I'm thinking of future promotional opportunities and Comic-Con type of events sound like fun, more so than book signings (I should be so lucky) - presuming that sufficient 'fame' justified that.

    My second book is finished and about to be released, but I do accept that it would be far better to have more books to market, and I'm working on that.

    I guess I was thinking more along the lines of being part of a genre-related stand where authors could share the costs and were allocated on-stand time proportionate to their extent of cost-sharing.  In my case the Science Fiction/Fantasy genre.

    Has that sort of thing been tried before?

    L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

    Offline ShayneRutherford

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5145
    • Toronto, Ontario
      • View Profile
      • My Website
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #6 on: January 09, 2020, 03:38:17 pm »
    Yes, I'm thinking of future promotional opportunities and Comic-Con type of events sound like fun, more so than book signings (I should be so lucky) - presuming that sufficient 'fame' justified that.

    My second book is finished and about to be released, but I do accept that it would be far better to have more books to market, and I'm working on that.

    I guess I was thinking more along the lines of being part of a genre-related stand where authors could share the costs and were allocated on-stand time proportionate to their extent of cost-sharing.  In my case the Science Fiction/Fantasy genre.

    Has that sort of thing been tried before?

    A couple of my friends did that once. They shared the cost of the table and took turns manning it while the other one made the rounds. From what I remember, they had a good time, but I think they just broke even after the cost of the table and paying to have the books printed.
             

    Offline L.E.Glazebrook

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 67
    • Gender: Female
    • I love NYC
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #7 on: January 09, 2020, 04:23:54 pm »
    A couple of my friends did that once. They shared the cost of the table and took turns manning it while the other one made the rounds. From what I remember, they had a good time, but I think they just broke even after the cost of the table and paying to have the books printed.

    Hey, as a new author and having to spent a lot on advertising atm, the thought of even breaking even would be enough for me to consider doing it.

    L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

    Offline ShayneRutherford

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5145
    • Toronto, Ontario
      • View Profile
      • My Website
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #8 on: January 09, 2020, 04:27:32 pm »
    Hey, as a new author and having to spent a lot on advertising atm, the thought of even breaking even would be enough for me to consider doing it.

    They had a table full of books between the two of them, though. Like, at least seven or eight titles, if I remember correctly. So that helped a lot, both to sell more books, and to get people to come to the table in the first place.
             

    Offline L.E.Glazebrook

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 67
    • Gender: Female
    • I love NYC
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #9 on: January 09, 2020, 04:36:44 pm »
    They had a table full of books between the two of them, though. Like, at least seven or eight titles, if I remember correctly. So that helped a lot, both to sell more books, and to get people to come to the table in the first place.

    Yes. I imagine something like 12 authors, 4 on at all times, sharing the time and the costs would help to generate buzz among visitors. It would look like a small bookshop. A bit like the comic stands, but books.

    L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

    Online Shane Lochlann Black

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 790
    • Lexicon Hollow
    • Write something funny by 4PM or you're fired.
      • View Profile
      • The Committee to Ban Shane Lochlann Black
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #10 on: January 09, 2020, 04:52:42 pm »
    The only way I would do a con would be if I could get the goose parade guys to do my marketing:   

    <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNf0QT9r97I" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNf0QT9r97I</a> 

    I will state here and now and for the record that I will WRITE a original NOVEL-LENGTH book about marching geese if those guys would appear at a con to market it.  :D
    « Last Edit: January 09, 2020, 04:54:15 pm by Shane Lochlann Black »

    Offline ShayneRutherford

    • Status: Edgar Allan Poe
    • *******
    • Posts: 5145
    • Toronto, Ontario
      • View Profile
      • My Website
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #11 on: January 09, 2020, 04:53:42 pm »
    Yes. I imagine something like 12 authors, 4 on at all times, sharing the time and the costs would help to generate buzz among visitors. It would look like a small bookshop. A bit like the comic stands, but books.

    At a con the size of SDCC, you're looking at hundreds of thousands of visitors, and tons of big name stars, so I wouldn't count on a table with 12 indie authors sharing it creating a whole lot of buzz. You'd probably get a lot more interest at a con that was more book-focused, like the Book Lovers' Con.
             

    Offline L.E.Glazebrook

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 67
    • Gender: Female
    • I love NYC
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #12 on: January 09, 2020, 05:30:25 pm »
    At a con the size of SDCC, you're looking at hundreds of thousands of visitors, and tons of big name stars, so I wouldn't count on a table with 12 indie authors sharing it creating a whole lot of buzz. You'd probably get a lot more interest at a con that was more book-focused, like the Book Lovers' Con.

    Thanks, always pay to aim high, but to assess realistically what might get the best results.
    I'll keep that in mind, thanks.

    L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

    Offline L.E.Glazebrook

    • Status: Madeleine L'Engle
    • **
    • Posts: 67
    • Gender: Female
    • I love NYC
      • View Profile
    Re: Is Comic-Con type event promotions worth it?
    « Reply #13 on: January 09, 2020, 06:57:55 pm »
    The only way I would do a con would be if I could get the goose parade guys to do my marketing:   

    <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNf0QT9r97I" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNf0QT9r97I</a> 

    I will state here and now and for the record that I will WRITE a original NOVEL-LENGTH book about marching geese if those guys would appear at a con to market it.  :D

    I must admit I hadn't thought of that marketing strategy. LOL  It would have to work. You try it first, and then get back to us..

    L.E.Glazebrook | Facebook | Goodreads | Wattpad

    KBoards.com

    • Advertisement
    • ***